Expect it to be scorching, blazing hot on 20th March 2016 (Sunday) due to the equinox phenomenon, when the sun crosses directly over the equator.
The phenomenon hits Peninsular twice a year – in March and September – and causes the highest degree of heat. In February last year, Malaysians faced extreme heat during the equinox phenomenon.
Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Datuk Wilfred Madius Tangau said that the current hot spell could cause a heatwave if the temperature exceeds 35°C for 5 straight days, or 37°C for 3 consecutive days, The Star reports.
In a statement, he said that the highest temperature was recorded on Thursday (10th March) in Alor Setar, and Chuping (Perlis) where it peaked at 38.5°C. He added that if the rain continued to stay away, then Kedah, Perlis, and Penang could record even higher temperatures. “As for the Klang Valley, the nights will be hotter than usual,” he said.
As a precautionary measure, Malaysians are advised to take care when engaging in outdoor activities.
And on that note, here are some tips to survive the extreme heat:
- Keep hydrated by drinking more water. You’ll need to consume more water than you usually do when it’s hot. If possible, drink cool water.
- Avoid alcoholic beverages and caffeine because these substances can act as diuretics and promote dehydration.
- Stay indoors during the hottest hours of the day. Shopping malls and movie theatres can all be good places to cool down.
- Take cool showers or baths, and consider using a spray bottle filled with cold water for refreshing spritzes throughout the day.
- Strategise your outfit. And by that, we don’t mean excessively revealing clothes. Wear light colours because they reflect light and therefore absorb the least heat.
The hot and dry weather is projected to ease by the end of the month following the inter-monsoon season where there would be more rain and thunderstorms in the evening.